During a recent webinar, the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association’s (CHTA) CEO and director general, Frank Comito talked about how the Caribbean hospitality sector and destinations were marshaling their crisis management experience to be able to bounce back stronger and better once the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) crisis has subsided.
Comito commended resort owners for using the opportunity to refresh their offerings and facilities and train staff on advanced aspects of the sector – albeit at a social distance – while the region remains closed to new visitors.
He also described the initiatives which CHTA, working in partnership with the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA), put in place since January. The measures built upon previous efforts to address health threats with training, information sharing, and signing up hotels to participate in an online health monitoring platform which was developed several years ago by the health agency.
He also pointed to research coming out of the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) and Oxford Economics research following the 2017 hurricanes showing that the Caribbean tourism sector recovered to pre-hurricane levels faster than anticipated, after returning with a new and improved product.
And the CHTA’s chief pointed out that the Caribbean tourism sector had a proven ability to rebound strongly from adversity, after developing resilience from experiences including 9/11, Zika, hurricanes, chikungunya, volcano eruptions and earthquakes.
“The data clearly shows we bounced back better and stronger … there’s every reason to believe we will be resilient once again,” he stated.
Comito also urged tourism stakeholders to take advantage of COVID-19 resources set up by CHTA to contain the spread of the virus in the region, and laid out on the CHTA COVID-19 Resource Center at www.caribbeanhotelandtourism.com/covid-19/, which covers everything from readiness to handling cancellations. He reinforced the important role which the Caribbean will play in restoring wellness and well-being as many look to refresh and ‘get back to nature’ once the pandemic subsides.
Go to https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bC014A7k64c for more on the session.
For more on the CHTA, drop by www.caribbeanhotelandtourism.com .